Analyst whirlwhind

Veteran analyst Omar Nokta is heading for the research job at Clarksons' banking arm, while the pundit now in that seat is about to become chief financial officer at private owner TBS International.

The analyst shuffle was tipped to TradeWinds by sources in the finance market this week and there are likely more moves to come in shipping's equity-research game after a long stretch of relative stability.

Global Hunter Securities' Nokta was able to line up the Clarkson Capital Markets job because the researcher there, Urs Dur, has agreed to take the CFO's chair at TBS, the bulker and tweendecker owner formerly listed in New York, sources tell TradeWinds.

Dur did not return a request for comment this week. Nokta also did not respond to a query, but confirmed his departure from GHS in a company press release this morning.

Nokta will stay on for a few months to allow a search for and transition to a successor. Nokta will head to the financial arm of the world's largest ship brokerage.

While Clarksons has made some inroads toward a stronger position in banking, it has not reached the success level of similarly constructed Norwegian house RS Platou Markets, which also seeks to leverage its broker expertise.

Nokta will bring a respected name to that effort. For Dur, the move is to an owner based in Westchester County, New York, that is now led by turnaround specialist Jeff Parry as chairman and Greg McNelis as chief executive.

They are backed by hedge funds led by Candlewood Investment Group. TBS has been maintaining its traditional business as a pooling and trading operation in bulkers and tweendeckers.

At the same time, it has launched a sister entity, Valhalla Management, that has been buying up second-hand bulkers ahead of what may be an initial public offering in New York.

Dur's experience in capital markets might prove especially useful in that context. Dur came to Clarksons in 2012 after a stint as equity analyst for Lazard Capital Markets. 

No announcement has been made to this point by Clarksons or by TBS, where an official declined comment this week.


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